2015 NBA Free Agency: Where Will LaMarcus Aldridge Sign?
LaMarcus Aldridge is the biggest NBA free agent still on the open market, partially because he’s without a doubt the biggest name that actually might leave his current team. Marc Gasol and LeBron James are also still available, but both are expected to re-sign with their respective franchises.
Rip City Intervention
LA, however, is weighing all of his options and reports surfaced long ago that he doesn’t intend on sticking with the Portland Trail Blazers. Reports suggest that Damian Lillard, Aldridge’s star Portland teammate, will meet with him in Los Angeles to try to convince him to do the exact opposite, however.
Lakers, Part Deux
Doing so may be difficult, and for several reasons. One reason is because Ridge is in L.A. specifically to meet with the Lakers for a second time. The first meeting went horribly by all accounts and didn’t focus much on actual basketball, which Aldridge supposedly would have preferred. The Lakers convinced Aldridge to return for a second go at it, though, and the storied franchise will have a chance at showing him how he’d fit in the system when it comes to producing on the court.
So Many Suitors, So Little Time
While the Lakers are the big story right now (and Damian Lillard is a minor sub-story), the bigger story lurks elsewhere, as Aldridge is balancing various proposals. The Miami Heat have stormed in as contenders, both the Phoenix Suns and San Antonio Spurs have moved players and money around to open up room to land Ridge and the Dallas Mavericks and Toronto Raptors both have done all they could to bring the stud power forward in.
The Raptors seem to be written off at this point, while Aldridge cancelled a meeting with the New York Knicks due to their desire to use him at center – something he is not remotely interested in.
All this fuss through the first two days of free agency, and yet we’ve seemingly gotten no closer to learning Aldridge’s final destination.
What we do know, however, is that a Lillard intervention is probably fruitless, the Knicks and Raptors are probably out and the Mavericks are losing steam.
The Lakers, on the other hand, suddenly are a legit threat now that they somehow talked Ridge into a second sit-down, while the Suns and Spurs have done enough to be in a two-way tie for first in the LaMarcus Aldridge sweepstakes.
Will it stay that way? It’s anyone’s guess, but if Ridge actually wants to win (and that is supposedly high on his list of wants), the Spurs are going to be the pick. Landing Aldridge would help the Lakers and Suns slowly turn into strong playoff contenders, but it’s the Spurs who stand to gain the most. Already a title contender (they just won in 2014), the Spurs would be a heavy favorite in the Western Conference if they snatched Ridge.
*photo from pdxboomblog.wordpress.com
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